What I want for Christmas: More Vancouver Canucks draft picks


It’s the giving season, but the Vancouver Canucks should be trying to receive. They host the 2019 NHL entry draft, and if history tells us anything, we should expect some more big moves from general manager Jim Benning. My dream Christmas gift for the Canucks is getting more draft picks.

Vancouver Canucks general Manager Jim Benning’s biggest strength is drafting, whether that’s due to his scouting background or simply the scouting group that he has assembled.

That group includes the likes of Judd Brackett, Thomas Gradin and Ron Delorme. There has been much praise for the Canucks on how they’ve drafted over the past few years. This is because of home run picks like Brock Boeser at 23rd in the draft, Elias Pettersson at fifth overall and even some later round picks that with some upside like Adam Gaudette, Lukas Jasek and Jack Rathbone.

The point is in order to have a playoff team, you have to build through the draft. I was chatting with a friend about rebuild and he brought up an amazing point. He said “It’s not guaranteed success trading for draft picks, but it’s the opposite that is the trouble, not acquiring draft picks is a guarantee for not having success.”

I found that interesting, because it’s true that not every draft pick will hit. But recall the famous quote from Wayne Gretzky: “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” You have to take those shots.

The problem in the past has been the trading of picks. Any good rebuild normally consists of having more picks than rounds in the draft (seven), especially in the top three. Those are obviously the rounds where you are more likely to find future NHLers.

So what can the Canucks do?

I’ve never been the writer to call for trades. But there are players on this roster that won’t be here when the team is at the level to be competing for both a playoff spot and possibly a Stanley Cup.

Alex Edler, Brandon Sutter and Chris Tanev are the three names that always seem to pop up when we start to talk about getting decent return in trades.

Edler has a full no-trade clause, and it seems that he doesn’t want to leave the city where he just took over the franchise record for most games played as a defenceman.

The thing is that Edler probably holds the most value, with a healthy couple months in 2019 there will be demand for a defenceman with that much experience. He loves the city and has been here his whole professional life. But if the Canucks won’t want to re-sign Edler, maybe he will explore the option of moving to a competitor like the Tampa Bay Lightning, Pittsburgh Penguins, Buffalo Sabres or even a team in the Pacific division.

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Brandon Sutter, it’s been talked about in the past that he would generate quite the return at the deadline and that even last season many teams were interested in his services.

I recently spoke with Jason Botchford of The Athletic Vancouver on my latest podcast episode, and he mentioned a few teams in the Pacific and the Penguins were all interested in Sutter.

We later got into what this team looks like with Sutter and Jay Beagle in the lineup at the same time, and how the team should explore the option of moving Sutter to open up an opportunity for some scoring in a bottom six line that is centered by Adam Gaudette.

So if it’s true that Sutter could fetch a second round pick I’m all ears to hear more about those kind of deals.

And then there’s Tanev.

In my opinion, it has been clear to see some drop off in Tanev’s game this season. His breakout passes do not look as crisp as they have in the past, and it makes me wonder is the body is simply breaking down from the mass amount of blocked shots and injuries over the years.

The good news is that his dollar amount is cheap for his services, and with one more year left on his deal, it is a good move for teams that need a right shot defensive-minded defenceman.

Sup Toronto?

Pick me! Pick me!

So, what I want for Canucks Christmas is simple and it’s opportunity. The chance for Jim Benning to throw more darts at the board, get more prospects that can develop and later contribute to a team that will compete for a Stanley Cup.

To think this team can do any damage in the playoffs right now is a bit of a reach, and I’m the positive guy most of the time!

This team needs to get as many picks as they can and put on a show at the 2019 NHL entry draft — here on home soil. The Canucks currently own all their picks in the 2019 draft and even added a sixth round pick from the Washington Capitals, which is a good start. This team comes into the draft with more than seven picks, now it’s time to add even more to that.

They need to explore every option to add more talent to this team. I like how Benning can buy low on some guys that the professional scouts are high on, but for me I’d like to see more of a buy in on 17 and 18-year-old, instead of 23 to 25-year-olds who need fresh starts.

dark. Next. 2018 TCW Vancouver Canucks prospect report cards

Make my 2019 more exciting and bring me the draft picks, because I want to see this team raise the Stanley Cup.


Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone. We all made it through another year!